Monday, July 14, 2008

Natural vs C-Sect

When Arielle was born via C-Sect, I was kind of disappointed as I wanted to go through the natural birth process. So this time round I have been praying that my gynae will allow me to go through the natural process as long as the baby is safe. But I will leave it up to the Lord as to which way His will is for me.

Well 2 years ago when I had my first, it has been said that the recovery process for natural birth is faster and within the month, the mum will be back to where she was before the delivery. No side effects being mentioned. Furthermore, the mum can have more & more kids if wanted and no time limit between kids. C-sect is like a major operation where it is expected to take a longer healing process and the mum cannot go through another delivery within the year of the operation. Number of kids will also be limited.

However, recently, I heard views that C-Sect is probably better than natural birth. I have heard that there are serious side-effects after natural birth due to all the pushing required. The internal organs of the mum apparently 'drops' from the original position causing everything to be loose. One of it is the bladder. Apparently, that can no longer be controlled as well as before. Even with a sneeze, the bladder will just release itself. Also, the intense pain experienced by the mum during and after. To quote a lady whom I recently spoke to 'the pain just pierces my heart'. Her first one was C and the second , natural. With C-Sect, so far my organs seem ok..just a scar at my bikini line that itches on and off.

Oh well, whichever way, the pain is inevitable. And whichever route it is, I leave it up to you Lord cos you are forever faithful.

Friday, July 11, 2008

Just can't wait!

Tomorrow, at my next Gynae appointment, I will be officially 38 weeks. I have put on heaps of weight (abt 17 kgs) and am bigger compared to my first pregnancy. My estimated due date is 27 July 2008 and I cannot wait. I do not know how my delivery is going to be like but I trust that God will be there with us every step of the way.

I really can't wait for delivery. The skin at my abdomen area is stretching too much already. I can no longer bend without being in pain. So I have just started applying cocoa butter though it may a bit late :) ... I have been feeling sick these few mornings after breakfast maybe because I overeat when my stomach has shrunk. I guess I am afraid I will feel hungry so I tend to stuff myself with food. You see during the first trimester I get so hungry in the mornings I sometimes feel I could just faint. And then the ongoing constipation problem that I have always been facing throughout both pregnancies just zaps all my energy. And above all I cannot wait to get back my taste buds. All the good food now just taste terrible in my mouth.

Of course also I cannot wait for the new addition to the family and to see how the little bundle of joy looks like. I almost cannot remember how to hold a tiny baby already so I hope when the little one comes I would become a natural again like with Arielle.

See you soon!

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

Cord Blood Banking

We recently decided to store our second kid’s cord blood with stem life as a form of an insurance policy for him. It doesn’t really cost much and we thought that since we did not store for Arielle, at least we have the opportunity to store for this one. Cord blood banking is pretty new in Malaysia, only made available since about 6 years ago. Research and use of stem cells therapy to cure diseases has been ongoing in the Western countries and Asia is beginning to catch up with it. Two of my friends stored their babies' cord blood and I recently saw some brochures on it. So when I asked Jon jon, he was all for it. He said to at least store for one of our kids in case we require it.

Did some research on the use of stem cells to determine if it is worth to store or not. Initial questions revealed that should store only if need to use it to cure any leukemic or thalassemic conditions currently existing within the family. Either that or if the family has any history of such conditions and the likelihood of the child getting it is high, it would be good to store. Further investigations revealed that stem cells can also be used to treat the following diseases which are really not common and unheard of except for the cancer bits :

Myelodysplastic Syndromes
• Amyloidosis
• Chronic Myelomonocytic Leukemia (CMML)
• Refractory Anemia (RA)
• Refractory Anemia with Excess Blasts (RAEB)
• Refractory Anemia with Excess Blasts in
Transformation (RAEB-T)
• Refractory Anemia with Ringed Sideroblasts (RARS)
S tem Cell Disorders
• Aplastic Anemia (Severe)
• Congenital Cytopenia
• Dyskeratosis Congenita
• Fanconi Anemia
• Paroxysmal Nocturnal Hemoglobinuria (PNH)
Myeloproliferative Disorders
• Acute Myelofibrosis
• Agnogenic Myeloid Metaplasia (Myelofibrosis)
• Essential Thrombocythemia
• Polycythemia Vera
Lymphoproliferative Disorders
• Hodgkin’s Disease
• Non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma
• Prolymphocytic Leukemia
Phagocyte Disorders
• Chediak-Higashi Syndrome
• Chronic Granulomatous Disease
• Neutrophil Actin Deficiency
• Reticular Dysgenesis
Liposomal Storage Diseases
• Adrenoleukodystrophy
• Gaucher’s Disease
• Hunter’s Syndrome (MPS-II)
• Hurler’s Syndrome (MPS-IH)
• Krabbe Disease
• Maroteaux-Lamy Syndrome (MPS-VI)
• Metachromatic Leukodystrophy
• Morquio Syndrome (MPS-IV)
• Mucolipidosis II (I-cell Disease)
• Mucopolysaccharidoses (MPS)
• Niemann-Pick Disease
• Sanfilippo Syndrome (MPS-III)
• Scheie Syndrome (MPS-IS)
• Sly Syndrome, Beta-Glucuronidase Deficiency
• Wolman Disease
Histiocytic Disorders
• Familial Erythrophagocytic Lymphohistiocytosis
• Hemophagocytosis
• Histiocytosis-X
• Langerhans’ Cell Histiocytosis
Inherited Erythrocyte Abnormalities
• Beta Thalassemia Major
• Blackfan-Diamond Anemia
• Pure Red Cell Aplasia
• Sickle Cell Disease
Congenital (Inherited) Immune System Disorders
• Absence of T & B Cells SCID
• Absence of T Cells, Normal B Cell SCID
• Ataxia-Telangiectasia
• Bare Lymphocyte Syndrome
• Common Variable Immunodeficiency
• DiGeorge Syndrome
• Kostmann Syndrome
• Leukocyte Adhesion Deficiency
• Omenn’s Syndrome
• Severe Combined Immunodeficiency (SCID)
• SCID with Adenosine Deaminase Deficiency
• Wiskott-Aldrich Syndrome
• X-Linked Lymphoproliferative Disorder
Other Inherited Disorders
• Cartilage-Hair Hypoplasia
• Ceroid Lipofuscinosis
• Congenital Erythropoietic Porphyria
• Glanzmann Thrombasthenia
• Lesch-Nyhan Syndrome
• Osteopetrosis
• Tay Sachs Disease
Inherited Platelet Abnormalities
• Amegakaryocytosis / Congenital Thrombocytopenia
Plasma Cell Disorders
• Multiple Myeloma
• Plasma Cell Leukemia
• Waldenstrom’s Macroglobulinemia
Other Malignancies
• Brain Tumors
• Breast Cancer
• Ewing Sarcoma
• Neuroblastoma
• Ovarian Cancer
• Renal Cell Carcinoma
• Small-Cell Lung Cancer
• Testicular Cancer
Autoimmune Diseases
• Evan Syndrome
• Multiple Sclerosis (Experimental)
• Rheumatoid Arthritis (Experimental)
• Systemic Lupus Erythematosus (Experimental)

What is the probability of our kid contracting one of the above especially if we do not have such conditions in the family tree? What else can stem cells be used for? Did a google search and found out that potential treatable diseases includes the more familiar conditions like :

• Alzheimer’s Disease
• Diabetes
• Heart Disease
• Liver Disease
• Muscular Dystrophy
• Parkinson’s Disease
• Spinal Cord Injury
• Stroke
• Knee Injury

More research are being carried out to expand on the use of stem cells to cure other diseases and also on how to "multiply stem cells". The amt of cells in the cord blood may be insufficient to treat an adult, so as the kid grows, the cord blood may be insufficient to treat his or her ailments and donors may be required.

Of course we always pray that both our kids will be blessed with good health and will not require to take out the cord blood.

Doing a google search with words like "cord blood banking" and "stem cells therapy" can provide lots of info on the topic.